There have been some more and less subtle hints that I haven’t written in a while.
I’m of course terribly flattered that People would actually ask me to write something (I generally feel I’m just bothering everybody with insisting on writing stuff.)

My time in Munich is coming to an end, I’m leaving in a Little over two weeks, and that suddenly feels like a very very short time.

I can’t believe the Summer is almost over (my last summer break ever!).

Unfortunately, a lot of the time since I wrote has been devoted to being sick (flu in the summer is NOT fun.) but there has also been some excursions to famous Munich objects, a lot of time spent in the Englischer Garten, quite a few beers drunken, and some German grammar lessons. There has also been a surprising number of Engagements in my friend circle, which makes me feel kinda old and leftout.

I have some other Posts I’d like to write (one about German peculiarities, for example) that I hope to have up before I leave.

While I tend to be an Optimist regarding most things when it Comes to other People, I am a Doom-predictor when it Comes to myself.

Every Little sign that People might dislike me, that things will not go well, that the WORLD IS ENDING… Now, of course there are plenty of psychologically fascinating explanations for this behavior, but suffice to say that I KNOW I am a worrier and an overthinker, and I am unlikely to Change.

 

That doesn’t mean I  can’t laugh about it.

My Office here in Germany is fairly small, around 12 People, and I work in a small Team with 3 men and 1 woman. All the other People are women.

For obvious reasons, I spend most time with my Team, including having lunch with them. Which I did today as well.
Just as I finished lunch, I noticed that all the other women in the Office were Standing by the door ready to go somewhere.

Off they went, and my immediate assumption was that they were going out to lunch. Together. And no one had asked me.

 

Cue teary eyes and bitter thoughts. I stewed for a Little while, then decided “Screw them!”.
Just as I came to that realization, People started dropping back in.

Two People went to the kitchen to eat a salad they had bought.
One had bought a new shampoo and showed it off.
Another one had gone to the pharamcy.

And so on und so weiter.

Leaving me Feeling plenty of righteous Indignation all for nothing.

 

Ah well.

 

(pardon the hideous writing, writing this from the German Office Keyboard.)

Dear Reader,

due to the sudden overabundance of free time I seem to have suddenly aqcuired, I have spent an inordinate amount of it reading books. Unfortunately, I haven’t had the energy for anything particularly complex and thus have been re-reading my old favorites.

A few hours recently spent in the Company of Jean Webster’s “Daddy Long-legs” and “Dear Enemy” has endeared me to the Letter Novel, and accounts for the changed writing style in this blog post. (undoubtedly I will be back to normal within a few days!) Until then, I live in a haze of literary references and early 20th century clothes.

I’ve meant to write you for the better part of a week, but as usual, other things have come in between, this time mainly work and an evening course in German. My brain is still swimming with all the new German words I’m learning, but it’s too early to determine if I’ve made any Progress. I live in hope, as always.

I’ve also made an effort to meet new People, and have gone out a few times with some other Swedes here in Munich. (are you not proud?!).

I hear someone calling, I must get back to work.

Yours, more than my own,

C

I’ve made a promise to one of my coworkers that I will start speaking German at work on Monday. (and she reminds me about it everyday too. Which is a good thing. Not a comfortable thing but a good thing.)

Which means I have exactly 6 days left of my English-speaking grace period.

On Monday I will start speaking only German at work.

There. I’ve said it, I will publish it on my feed and now I have to do it.

 

(why do I do these things?)

 

“How was your second day?” asked my best friend when I messaged with her tonight.

“Good,” I said. “But I felt so useless because there are so many things that I can’t do yet because of the language issue. I want to prove that I’m a good addition to the company, and I just feel like i sit and stare now.”

And she had to remind me that it was only my second day, and that people weren’t expecting me to know everything yet.

In fact, they’ve given me no indication that they think I’m doing a bad job. In fact, they’ve been apologizing because they can’t always find me stuff to do.

It’s one of the big drawbacks to having the kind of personality I do (and probably do being a woman used to competitive environments), this constant need to prove that you’re worthy, that you’re not a hassle or wasting anyone’s time. The need to constantly perform.

I’m not saying it’s bad to do a good job. But it’s the part about reasonable expectations that’s the tricky bit.

I have successfully survived my first day at work. There has been A LOT of German (my head is spinning) but mostly, it’s been good. The boss is on vacation (;)) so people were… quite relaxed today, which was good for me.

There are about 13 people (including 2 other interns) and 2 dogs at the office, and everyone was extremely informal (which surprised me, seeing it is a German office) and friendly.
A couple of people invited me to stay and watch the Germany-Portugal game, and even though I would have prefer to go home and bury myself under some pillows, I stayed (of course!) and had a nice time and some beers.

All and all, i think I will survive the summer!

 

An extremely unpoetic post but that’s all I have the brainpower for at the moment!

Most of you know I’m not the most sociable of people when I’m busy. It’s not that I don’t enjoy the company, it’s just that I require a lot of alone time, and that I often get funks where I don’t feel like doing much of all (as you’ve experienced when I don’t answer texts for weeks on end!).

However, as it always is when a big change is approaching, I’ve been seeing a lot of the people I haven’t had time to see during term time. And as it always is, I now don’t want to leave, because I have been having such a lovely time, and am so fond of all my friends. It’s strange, that I can feel I’m so lonely and friendless (brain ghosts) during term time, and then realize how many fantastic people I have in my life already. And as soon as I realize that, I have to leave.

And I am nervous about being away. I wish I could turn my brain off, and not worry about whether I will have anyone to spend time with this summer or not, whether I manage the work, whether I remember any German or not, and any number of thoughts that invade the brain at times like these. At the same time, I know it’s normal, and that most people feel this way (and if they don’t, they’re uncommonly composed and self-assured!), but that doesn’t help when one is in the middle of freaking out.

I’ve said my last goodbye, and pack my bags and now I’m ready. I hope.

Since I’m leaving tomorrow (!) and will (hopefully (!!)) have a great time and many adventures, I’ll use this blog to keep everyone at home updated. We all know I’m terrible at answering emails, so this will hopefully convince everyone at home and in the US that I am alive and well. (which I hope I will be!) And so that my family in the US will understand, I’ll write in English.

I’m leaving tomorrow for Munich, Germany, to work there until the end of August at an HR firm, as part of a mandatory internship for my master’s degree. After that, I come home for 1-2 weeks to do a reexam before I go to Vienna, Austria, to do an exchange semester. I come home from there at Christmas, and then I have one semester left before I’m done with my masters.

To days to come, then!

 

I’m currently in Riga working on a two-week consulting project in course on creating international firms.

Here’s what I’ve observed so far:

– There are surprisingly many dads with prams walking around.

– Dogs, however, are scarce.

– Food (everything) is incredibly for a Swede and we’ve been eating out almost every night.

– The scars of the Soviet occupation seem to have faded very little in the 20+ years since the independence.

– People in service jobs tend to be extremely service-minded.

– Most companies have absolutely no idea what they’re doing.

– The Ukraine situation worries the Lats.

– Buildings are a mix of incredibly worn houses and remarkable historical buildings.

– We are a curiosity at our office and people constantly poke their heads in to say hi.

– Skirts are much longer here than in Sweden and my Swedish-length ones have been slightly conspicuous.

– Programmers are and look the same in any country.

Deadline and final presentation is on Friday, so back to work.

 

 

Yes, these are normally done before December 31 but since I always procrastinate, it seems oddly appropriate to do it two weeks into the new year.
Did you do something in 2013 you’d never done before? YES! I finally, after many years of thinking about it, started taking ballet lessons. And it was as difficult as I had imagined, and even more fun.

Did you make any big changes? Except from the ballet? No, not any big ones, but plenty of small ones that made life easier.

Did any of your friends become parents this year? One of my cousins did! A fantastic baby girl that I adore. But it seems 2014 will be the big year (see post below!) which makes me feel old and immature.
What countries did you visit? Let me see… Norway, France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Holland. a very Euro-centered year. Did anything make you very happy? My parents, because they usually do. My close friends, who always are a joy to meet. Doctor Who and all its fans (sad but true!)

Is something missing in 2013 that you want from 2014? A little more excitement! I’ve gotten good at only doing things I truly enjoy and taking time for myself and resting, now I want some adventure!

What do you wish you’d done more often? Worked out. I know it’s good for you, I know I like it afterwards but bloody hell, I think it’s so boring. Also, called friends whom I don’t see everyday. I’m not a phone person, so I usually don’t.

What do you wish you’d done less? The obvious thing here would be “eaten less candy” but actually, I enjoyed all the candy I ate in 2013 immensely. I think it would be all the lunches and dinners I bought because I didn’t feel like cooking.

Favorite TV-shows? Easy question. Doctor Who. 😉 I always watched a fair bit of Supernatural and loved Broadchurch when it was on.

Best book you read in 2013? How to choose?? I also feel I haven’t read that many new books this year. I did enjoy The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemsin a lot.

What was your biggest success work-wise? Graduating college! So that would be when we turned in our thesis and when I found out I passed the accounting exam I studied all summer for.

What was your biggest success in your private life? Becoming better at small things like keeping my apartment in order, seeing my friends and doing enjoyable things. And ballet. Always ballet.

Where you happier or sadder this year compared to other years? Happier, without a doubt. But I also think life gets better and better for every year that passes.

Something you wanted and got? A fantastic dress for our diploma prom!

What did you do on your birthday 2013? I had class, and then I had my relatives over for coffee and cake, and a nice dinner with my family before we went to the opera. Very quiet but lovely.

Is there anything that would’ve made your year even better? More excitement! It felt like a very quiet year.

What made you feel good? Spending time with friends, watching Netflix, dancing, doing well in school.

Best new people you met? The people in my grad school class, undoubtedly.

Most proud of? Graduating college. Sometimes, it felt like I would NEVER get there.

What will you do better in 2014? Say yes to more things, and take more chances. It sounds like a horoscope, but it’s true. Procrastinate less (heh. let’s see.)